The Samsung Gear S2 is now officially official, and while it may be small, there's no doubt the watch carries a lot of brand baggage out of the box. The original Samsung Gear was, and this is a fact, bad. The second one wasn't even really that much better. And the Gear Fit, while sort of cool to look at, was basically worthless. And then there was the Gear S but honestly who even bought one of those? (I'm about to find out, aren't I?)
The Gear name is pretty much associated with critical and consumer misses for Samsung in the wearables market at this point, so Gear S2 is perhaps a slightly less predictable name than you might first think.
In advance of IFA, Samsung is promoting a new set of wireless speakers they will show off there. Adding to their product lineup called Wireless Audio 360, this might signal a bit more seriousness on Samsung's part in terms of competing in the consumer speaker market. The R1, R3, and R5 join the R6 and R7, which were announced last year and look like eggs.
Samsung boasts about the design that blasts sound out in every direction, which addresses a fairly common shortcoming for consumer speakers. Unlike the previous generation's models, these will have some physical controls atop each device so you don't need to have access to the source to make adjustments.
While the Note 5 and S6 edge+ are far from the first Samsung phones with reported issues killing background tasks with unusual aggressiveness, they are the first ones with four freaking gigabytes of RAM to do so. We've long assumed that Samsung's background task issues on certain handsets are related to a lack of RAM headroom due to TouchWiz, and yet, the Note 5 and S6 edge+ may exhibit the most aggravating task killing of any Samsung devices we've yet seen. Let's cut to the video for a complete explanation. (I realize it's long, but I'd recommend watching all the way through to see what's going on here.)
The issue was readily reproducible on both our S6 edge+ and Note 5 review units, and we aren't the first people to point this out.
Have you heard? Samsung has announced new phones. In case you have not heard, here's an ad in your notification shade. It looks like this has happened to at least a few people thanks to the Samsung Push Service. In a separate incident, I myself have been served an ad by the bundled Peel remote app. Is nothing sacred anymore, Samsung?
Way back in April Samsung officially announced the Galaxy Tab A, a new tablet line with a 4:3 screen and metal body that screams "iPad alternative" in every language. So far we haven't heard of any carriers taking a bite, but Samsung's tablets are so ubiquitous that it was more or less inevitable. T-Mobile hasn't officially announced a Galaxy Tab A for the "Uncarrier," but the company's support site now has a listing for a branded version.
We didn't cover Samsung's Gear S all that much. While the smartwatch may seem like just another Android-powered wrist-bound gadget from a manufacturer that has produced many, this one was different. It actually ran Tizen.
Well, Samsung has another one in the works. The company teased the hardware in this 30-second video.
The hot ticket for Samsung seems to be its Edge models, but if all you want is a solid flagship at a good price, great deals can be had on the standard Galaxy S6 model. If you head over to eBay's Daily Deals portal, you'll see a vendor selling an unlocked 32GB model for $469.99, a solid $130 off the unlocked retail price and $10 less than our previous best price for the phone. Get an order in quick if you want one, this isn't likely to last very long.
This is a brand new phone, not refurbished as many eBay deals tend to be, and it's available in black, white, gold, and "blue" (read: teal).